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Government Reader Contributed

Op-Ed: Ban The Bag!

Sedgwick seventh-graders are hoping West Hartford will decide to 'Ban the Bag.' Courtesy photo

Evan Piccioli, Charlotte Tucker, and Zoe Weismann are seventh-graders at Sedgwick Middle School, and plan to present this information about plastic bags to the West Hartford Town Council.

By Evan Picciolo, Charlotte Tucker, and Zoe Weismann

As concerned environmentalists and town residents, we would like to ask for your support in our mission to ban the use of single-use plastic grocery bags in our town of West Hartford.

Over the last 20 years, plastic bag pollution has increased dramatically, which has caused detrimental effects around the world. Thousands of marine animals, such as sea turtles, whales and sea birds, have died from plastic bags, and a “Great Garbage Patch” has formed in our oceans.

So what? How does plastic bag pollution affect us in West Hartford? Look around and you will see that plastic bags are in our parks, on our roads, and in our neighborhoods. Local animals and our pets consume small bits of plastic, or get tangled in the plastic, causing bodily harm. (Think high veterinary bills!)

The fish that we consume has been living and feeding in oceans filled with plastic bags, presenting the likelihood that we are also consuming the micro plastics found in our oceans. In addition, every single day, our recycling plants have to shutdown temporarily, to unclog the misplaced plastic bags that are jamming the machines. This is a physical threat to the workers and will eventually lead to higher taxes for our residents!

Lastly, some of our favorite vacation sites, such as the Connecticut River, Long Island Sound, and the Atlantic Ocean are impacted by our plastic bag consumption.

We are proposing the utilization of reusable bags, as a more environmentally and economically friendly alternative. Many residents own reusable bags, so we know that many people are already concerned about single plastic bag consumption.

In conclusion, being free of single-use plastic bags assures a healthy environment for our residents, children and animals, and showcases West Hartford as a progressive and globally responsible community!

Thank you!

Please click on the following link to participate in our survey, and to show support of a plastic bag ban here in West Hartford: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSesWAVdFbSE4CuSRFomRApl6EfE8A82nBZY2OUudvdsM0uDLw/viewform?usp=sf_link

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